Blair Oaks marches on, finishes off a tough week for California
\WARDSVILLE --- It was another good night for Terry Walker and the Blair Oaks football program.
On the other sideline, losing a game was the best thing that happened to the California Pintos this week.
The California football family --- really, the entire California community--- suffered the most difficult of losses on Monday with the passing of longtime coach Geary Labruary, 65, after his valiant battle with cancer.
The Falcons won the game, 44-6 , but you could understand if the Pintos' hearts were heavy and minds were elsewhere. It was Labruary, after all, who turned California into a football power in Missouri. in the 1980s and 90s.
He finished with 307 wins during his 34-year career as head coach, with the bulk of those wins coming with the Pintos. Under Labruary, the Pintos won 13 district championship --- including six straight in in the 1990s --- and advanced to the championship game three straight years, winning it in 1997.
Those were the days, indeed.
California (1-7) has now lost four straight by a combined total of 186-34, and were no match for Blair Oaks (8-0, No. 2 Class 3) on this night. The Falcons have won 28 straight in the regular season, the last 26 under Walker.
There was also this --- Walker's alma mater, the Jefferson City Jays, celebrated homecoming Friday night with a marquee 31-14 win over the state-ranked Battle Spartains. Walker was an old school, hard-nosed two-way player during Jefferson City's 1984 state championship season --- a great blocker on the offensive line, an all-state linebacker with a jarring and sure style of tackling on defense.
He's brought that he old school, hard-nosed, fundamentally-sound approach to Wardsville. And if you were wondering, the answer is yes --- old school still works.
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